The retirement decision
Dear Annie: My fiance recently decided to retire this coming March. We both will be 65 in January, and I have decided to continue to work for another year. If he continued to work for another year, he would increase his Social Security benefits at age 66, and I think that would be smart. He says he can make up the difference in his salary by working part time in retirement, but seeing as he can make only $15,000 in addition to Social Security at 65, he will be losing out on $12,000 that would have gone toward his Social Security totals. I am suffering from resentment because he has ignored my advice. Am I being unreasonable? — Resentful Senior
Dear Resentful: You can begin your retirement in a state of relaxation or resentment. Your fiance has figured out what works best for him. You should do the same for yourself. Relax about this last year of working or not working, and focus on enjoying your retirement with your mate, which I hope will be for many years.
Dear Annie: “Blamed and Alone” wrote to you about his wife’s loathing him for no apparent reason and seeming to have a lot of persistent rage, though they’ve been in therapy. I’ve seen quite a few letters addressed to you about similar problems. Did it ever occur to “Blamed and Alone” that his wife’s problem could relate to menopause? I have personally seen what menopause can do to a woman’s psyche. My dad’s friend went through a bout of melancholia and wouldn’t let her husband leave the house for work. She sat and cried all day. My mother became extremely irritable when she entered menopause.
Maybe “Blamed and Alone’s” wife would benefit from a visit to her gynecologist, in addition to a therapist. When I entered menopause, I started to suffer anxiety and panic attacks, which were very unlike me. My doctor prescribed a hormone, which did the trick. I was a different person from that day on. Though every drug has side effects, you have to weigh the pros and cons and decide what will help you lead your best life. I certainly wouldn’t discount the possibility that drugs could help the wife of the letter writer. — Been There, Done That
Dear Been There, Done That: Thank you for sharing your experience. I’m not sure whether it applies to the situation between “Blamed and Alone” and his wife, but it’s possible. In any case, it’s a good reminder that hormonal changes are no joke, and the accompanying mood swings can be severe and even dangerous. I encourage anyone experiencing this to talk to a doctor as soon as possible.